Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis InternationalĀ® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


46th Annual Convention; Washington DC; 2020

Event Details

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Symposium #569
CE Offered: BACB
An Examination of Technology-Based Interventions Designed to Help Adolescents and Adults With Autism Spectrum Disorders and Severe Developmental Disabilities
Monday, May 25, 2020
3:00 PM–4:50 PM
Walter E. Washington Convention Center, Level 1, Room 102
Area: DDA/AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Sheila R. Alber-Morgan (The Ohio State University)
Discussant: Marjorie H. Charlop (Claremont McKenna College)
CE Instructor: Sheila R. Alber-Morgan, Ph.D.

Adolescents with autism and severe developmental disabilities may encounter a wide range of challenges that affect their quality of life and safety as they transition to adulthood. Interventionists and behavior change agents are responsible for helping individuals with disabilities enhance their quality of life by increasing their daily living, functional, and vocational skills as well as helping them remain safe. The four data-based presentations in this symposium examine the use of various technology-based interventions for improving outcomes of adolescents and adults with significant disabilities. Two of the research studies examine the comparative effects of picture and video prompting to teach vocational skills to young adults with ASD in the first presentation and to adolescents with severe intellectual and developmental disabilities in the second presentation. The third presentation examines the effectiveness of a computer-based transition skills program, Teachtown®, on functional and daily living skills for adolescents with severe intellectual disability. The fourth presentation examines the effectiveness of using virtual reality technology to train law enforcement to recognize and effectively deescalate challenging behavior of individuals with autism.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): functional skills, technology-based interventions, transition skills, vocational skills

Evaluating the Effects of a Picture Activity Schedule to Video Prompting on Vocational Skills to Young Adults With Autism Spectrum Disorder

ANA C. ALBAN (Caldwell University), Ruth M. DeBar (Caldwell University), Meghan Deshais (Caldwell University), Dawn B. Townsend (Institute for Educational Achievement)

Teaching a wide range of skills to individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) during the early years is critical as those skills will promote a successful transition to adult life. Instructional strategies including video prompting and activity schedules have been shown to be effective in teaching various skills to individuals with developmental disabilities. However, the comparative effectiveness of these interventions on teaching vocational skills remains unknown. Therefore, the purpose of the study was to assess the comparative effects of a picture activity schedule and video prompting when teaching vocational skills to young adults diagnosed with ASD. Additionally, efficiency of these interventions across number of sessions to mastery and the number of prompts provided was investigated. Generalized responding across a novel task was also assessed. Video prompting was found to be slightly more effective than picture activity schedule for three participants in completing a task independently. Meanwhile, picture activity schedule was effective for one participant.


Comparison of Picture and Video Prompting to Teach Vocational Skills to Students With Severe Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

MARY BARCZAK (The Ohio State University)

Students with severe disabilities deserve evidence-based instruction in marketable job skills that prepare them for employment. Current literature supports the use of both video prompts and picture prompts to teach job skills to this population. Questions remain, however, about which prompt type is more effective for teaching job skills. This study compares the effects of video prompts and picture prompts on the performance of vocational tasks by students with severe disabilities to determine which prompt type is more effective and efficient. Additionally, students’ preference for picture or video prompts are assessed to determine whether their preference corresponds to the most effective prompt type.


Effects of TeachTown on Functional Skills of Students With Disabilities

MEGHAN MAIRE O'NEAL (The Ohio State University), Lindsey Miller (The Ohio State University), Christina Rouse-Billman (The Ohio State University), Sheila R. Alber-Morgan (The Ohio State University), Moira Konrad (The Ohio State University)

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) mandates that students with an individualized education program (IEP) have transition services in effect by the time the student turns 16 years old. The computer-based program, TeachTown Transition to Adulthood, uses evidence-based practices to teach a wide range of skills, including daily living and functional skills, to students with disabilities. The program combines video modeling, computer-based lessons, visual task analyses, prompting, data collection, and a variety of visual supports. This study examines the effectiveness of TeachTown Transition to Adulthood on transition skills for six high school students with severe developmental disabilities. A multiple baseline across skills design demonstrated the TeachTown curriculum was functionally related to participants’ improvement and mastery of individualized functional skills.

Examining the Efficacy of Using Virtual Reality as a Stimulus Prompt to Aid Law Enforcement
CHATURI EDRISINHA (Oakland University), Zexin Ma (Oakland University), Karoline Kenville (Oakland University), Madeline Morgan (Oakland University)
Abstract: Recent development in immersive media technologies allow stories to be produced with sensory-rich digital details, such as virtual reality (VR) and Oculus 360. These technologies have the potential of affecting story and character involvement through its immersive features. In particular, an immersive story can create the illusion of being there, which allows the viewer to experience the events and situations as if they were in the midst of the events. This study focuses on the influence of two features of VR videos: VR and interactivity, in increasing the efficacy of a police training video vignette specifically aimed at training police officers to make a correct response in quickly identifying and de-escalating a scenario with mock civilians who exhibits characteristics of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). The VR intervention was implemented in a multiple probe across participants design. Preliminary data collected on the percentage of correct responses made by officers show that the training program was more effective among participants who engaged with the vignette in VR headsets (vs. laptops). This study will have important practical implications for developing effective law enforcement training programs to promote safe interactions with individuals with ASD.



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